Coalition Answers the Question: Why Certify?
Certification programs have much to offer construction employers and employees, industry and society, according to the Construction Certifications Coalition (C3). C3, which represents top certification programs in the built environment, is a broad-based coalition with members representing 21 organizations. C3 encourages companies and individuals to consider certifications as a way of advancing their professional development.
Since spring of 2001, C3 members have been meeting regularly to discuss how to improve and promote certification programs. Membership in the coalition is open to organizations that administer or support certifications in the built environment.
One result of C3's meetings is the document "Certification Matters," which states:
VALUE OF CERTIFICATION for the Employee:
- Provides a recognized certification of skills and knowledge resulting in increased professional stature
- Provides a marketable credential to an employer, prospective employer or client
- Provides increased opportunities for job advancement
- Allows quicker entry into new job assignments or responsibilities
VALUE OF CERTIFICATION for the Employer:
- Independent assessment of employee's knowledge and skills based on a high national standard
- Identification of training needs and measurement of training comprehension
- Recognized credentialing of a pool of qualified company professionals in focused career tracks that improves marketability
- Mobility of that workforce across state lines
VALUE OF CERTIFICATION to the Industry:
- Linkage between the standards of the profession and individual practice
- Assurance of competency upon which quality assurance and quality control programs depend
- Commitment to the maintenance and improvement of individual and company/agency professional capabilities and ethical standards
- Respect and recognition of individuals and firms that demonstrate high levels of knowledge and experience
VALUE OF CERTIFICATION to the Public:
- Promotes the health, safety, and welfare of the public by encouraging and increasing professionalism in the built environment
- Increases consumer confidence in the products and facilities provided by the construction industry through use of skilled practitioners
- Provides the public with an increased level of confidence through the use of experienced and tested practitioners
- Provides the public with a clear identification of individuals and companies that have established and maintain high industry standards
The Construction Certifications Coalition is a forum for certification authorities in the built environment to exchange information. The mission of C3 is to promote best practices and continuing education, and to collectively endeavor to increase the quality, value, awareness and recognition of certification programs.
NIA began its first certification program, the Insulation Energy Appraisal Program (IEAP), in October of 2000. Since that time, over 260 individuals have become certified insulation energy appraisers. Participation in this program is valued at 1.5 continuing education units (C.E.U.'s). This accredited 2-day course teaches students to:
-Determine the optimal insulation thickness and corresponding energy and dollar savings.
-Interview customers to gather information for the appraisal.
-Use the 3E Plus computer software program.
-Determine the amount of greenhouse gases saved through the use of insulation.
-Analyze and complete the appraisal spreadsheet.
-Complete a final customer report.
The next Insulation Energy Appraisal Program will be held November 14-15, 2002 in Chicago, IL.
This article appeared in the July/August/September 2002
issue of NIA News.